The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Department of Energy recently outlined a series of steps to further strengthen the Energy Star program. The steps are part of an overall effort by the Obama administration to improve the energy efficiency of homes and appliances to save families money. In addition to third-party testing already underway, the agencies have launched a new two-step process to expand testing of Energy Star-qualified products.
DOE has begun testing some of the most commonly used appliances, which account
for more than 25 percent of a household’s energy bill: water heaters,
dishwashers, clothes washers, freezers, refrigerator-freezers and room air
conditioners. The agency will test approximately 200 basic models at
third-party, independent test laboratories over the next few months.
EPA and DOE are also developing an expanded system that will require all
products seeking the Energy Star label to be tested in approved labs and
require manufacturers to participate in an ongoing verification testing program
that will ensure continued compliance.
agencies have taken a series of actions in recent months to ensure compliance
with both Energy Star and the DOE’s appliance efficiency standards (which set
baseline energy efficiency levels for appliances), including taking action
against 35 manufacturers in the past four months.
December, the DOE announced it would be aggressively enforcing reporting
requirements that manufacturers are required to submit to the department
certifying the energy use of residential appliance models and compliance with
energy-efficiency standards. It offered manufacturers a 30-day window to submit
complete and accurate reports to the department. During that period, the DOE
received energy use reports from 160 different manufacturers, covering over
600,000 residential products.
Visitwww.energystar.govfor further information.